Cinque Terre


The Cinque Terre is a fascinating coastal area of the Ligurian Riviera that includes the villages of Vernazza, Monterosso, Corniglia, Manarola, and Riomaggiore. Set among terraced cliffs and vineyards, it is also one of Italy's most beautiful natural oases.

On Ferryhopper you will find useful information on must-see places, beaches, local delicacies, and ferries to Cinque Terre! Take a look at our travel tips and book your ferry tickets to Italy with no hidden costs.

Sheets hanging on colorful balconies in Vernazza, Cinque Terre, Italy

Vernazza's picturesque little balconies

Vacation in Cinque Terre

The Cinque Terre is a one-of-a-kind travel destination. If you are in Genoa on vacation, you should take advantage of the opportunity to visit the 5 most famous UNESCO Heritage villages in Liguria. Why? Because each one has its own personality and treasures to discover, from colorful houses climbing the hills to hidden beaches and breathtaking hiking trails.

A trip to the Cinque Terre will allow you to experience the relaxed and welcoming atmosphere of the local communities and unplug for a few days. Cinque Terre is ideal for a vacation with friends, couples, or family.

How to get to Cinque Terre

Cinque Terre can be reached by train, ferry, or car (though this is the least recommended option).

The main train line connecting Milan and Genoa stops in La Spezia before continuing on to Riomaggiore, Manarola, Corniglia, Vernazza, and Monterosso al Mare. In addition to regional trains, the Cinque Terre Express operates during certain months of the year, with departures every 15 minutes.

Getting to the Cinque Terre by sea is another popular option. From March to November, ferries depart from La Spezia, Portovenere, and the towns of Lerici and Levanto. There are also scheduled ferry trips from Genoa to Monterosso. More information on ferries to the Cinque Terre can be found in our dedicated section.

If you plan to drive to the Cinque Terre villages, keep in mind that the roads are quite narrow, full of curves, and very busy in the summer. In addition, parking in Cinque Terre is extremely limited.

Useful info: Cinque Terre is about 85 km from Genoa. You could combine two trips by taking a ferry from Sardinia or Sicily to Genoa and then continuing on to Cinque Terre.

Ferry to Cinque Terre docked at the pier in Portovenere, Liguria, Italy

Ferry docked at the colorful port of Portovenere

What to do in Cinque Terre

The Cinque Terre offers a diverse range of experiences for those seeking adventure, culture, and natural beauty. 

If you enjoy hiking, there are several trails that connect the five picturesque coastal towns, offering breathtaking views of the vineyards and the sea. 

For some beach relaxation, head to the small bays near the harbors or rent a small boat to reach the wildest coves. 

Each Cinque Terre village conceals monuments, ancient churches, and a distinct food and wine culture. Wander through the towns' colorful houses, get lost in the alleys and squares, and enjoy a fish cone or a traditional focaccia. 

Choose your starting point and try to visit all of the Cinque Terre villages for a 360º experience!

Beaches in Cinque Terre

In addition to the beauty of the villages, the Cinque Terre is famous for its sea. Despite its steep cliffs and rocky inlets, this region has some sandy areas and well-equipped accommodations.

Here are the 6 best Cinque Terre beaches not to be missed:

  1. Fegina beach (Monterosso): it is the largest of the Cinque Terre and is close to the village's train station. The majority of the shoreline is sandy, with some rocks here and there. The sea is also crystal clear, with deep waters. Sunbeds, umbrellas, and showers are available on the beach.
  2. Spiaggia del Gigante (Monterosso): this small free beach near the marina gets its name from the imposing statue of the god Neptune that towers over the bay. As it is very crowded during the summer, we recommend going early in the morning to enjoy the sea in peace.
  3. Canneto beach (Riomaggiore): it is located just before the village of Riomaggiore and is considered one of the most beautiful in the Cinque Terre. It's a sandbar dotted with stones and pebbles, framed by a sheer cliff overlooking the sea. Natural freshwater waterfalls also cascade down the rocks on one side. The only way to get to the beach is by boat.
  4. Fossola beach (Riomaggiore): this is a scenic cove with dark pebbles that can only be reached by sea. It is wild and sheltered from the winds. The cove is popular among locals and is located between the village of the same name and the promontory of Punta Montenero.
  5. Vernazza beach: this small cove among the rocks is near the boat pier and the Santa Margherita church. The surrounding scenery is breathtaking, and the sandy section of the beach has a designated swimming area. It is a 5-minute walk from Vernazza station.
  6. Guvano beach (Corniglia): this wild little beach has been popular since the 1970s and still retains the hippie atmosphere of the time. It's a secluded spot with sand and white pebbles that's popular with naturists. At the moment, the beach can only be reached by sea.

Umbrellas and deck chairs on Fegina beach in Monterosso, Cinque Terre, Italy

The lovely Fegina beach in Monterosso

Sightseeing in Cinque Terre

Every village in Cinque Terre has its own unique charm, with alleys, small squares, ancient churches, and scenic viewpoints.

Don't miss:

  • Monterosso's historic center and its caruggi (traditional Ligurian alleys)
  • The Statue of Neptune (Monterosso), 14 meters high and weighing about 1,700 quintals
  • The Aurora Tower (Monterosso), built in the 16th century.
  • The Sanctuary of Soviore (Monterosso), the oldest in Liguria
  • Monterosso's weekly market, held on Thursday mornings
  • Vernazza's picturesque Marconi square, located in front of the small harbor 
  • The Doria Castle (Vernazza), which also houses a museum
  • The small gothic-style church of Santa Margherita d'Antiochia (Vernazza)
  • The Via dell'Amore (walk of love), a paved road overlooking the sea that connects Riomaggiore and Manarola
  • The Bell Tower of the church of San Lorenzo (Manarola)
  • Via Belvedere (Manarola), with its spectacular sea view
  • The small port of Riomaggiore, one of the most picturesque in the Cinque Terre
  • The church of San Giovanni Battista (Riomaggiore), which dates back to the 1300s
  • The church of San Lorenzo (Riomaggiore), with its famous rose-shaped window dating back to the 9th century.
  • The Riomaggiore Castle, built in 1260 and situated on a mountainous spur
  • The Oratory of the Disciplinati di Santa Caterina (Corniglia), an 18th-century origin church located in town center
  • The Lardarina staircase, which connects the train station and the beach of Corniglia to the village
  • The pretty central square Largo Taragio (Corniglia)
  • The panoramic terrace of Santa Maria (Corniglia), overlooking the sea

View of the Corniglia village and its surroundings, Italy

The village of Corniglia and its promontory surrounded by nature

Nightlife in Cinque Terre

Cinque Terre is a peaceful getaway away from the usual nightlife. 

Restaurants, cafes, and bars with views of the sea make the villages come alive. You can walk around, spend an evening on the beach and simply follow the slow pace of the Cinque Terre. 

For those looking for a more lively evening, the village of Monterosso al Mare has a few clubs open until late at night. If you want to go to a club, we recommend moving to the livelier resorts of La Spezia and Sestri Levante.

Food in Cinque Terre

Cinque Terre cuisine is simple and authentic. The flavor of the sea and local vegetables shines through in the dishes, which are enhanced by the region's exceptional extra-vergine olive oil. In addition to small restaurants with views of the sea, Cinque Terre focuses on street food and has something for everyone's taste.

Here are some delicacies to try during your trip to Cinque Terre:

  • the anchovies of Monterosso (marinated, fried or even stuffed)
  • Vernazza's tian de anciue, a dish of anchovies, potatoes, fresh tomatoes and various herbs made in the pan
  • stuffed mussels
  • mixed fried fishes
  • focaccia
  • the savory rice cake (with a puff pastry base and filled with rice, dried mushrooms, eggs, tomato and cheese)
  • the Monterossina, a cake with several layers filled with jam, cream and dark chocolate
  • local honey
  • the Sciacchetrà raisin wine
  • the lemons of Monterosso

Basket of organic lemons from Monterosso, Cinque Terre, Italy

Lemons from Monterosso, a Cinque Terre specialty


Here are 6 tips for an unforgettable stay in Cinque Terre:

  1. If you don't like crowds, we recommend you avoid Cinque Terre on weekends, during holidays and in July and August.
  2. Plan ahead and make restaurant reservations well in advance so you don't have to wait in lines or risk not finding a seat.
  3. Every Christmas, the world's largest nativity scene, with over 300 life-size figures, is set up in Manarola. A chance to visit the Cinque Terre even during the off-season!
  4. The small archipelago of Portovenere, which includes the beautiful islands of Palmaria, Tino, and Tinetto, is located very close to the Cinque Terre. Add them to your travel plans!
  5. The Cinque Terre Marine Protected Area is part of the Pelagos Cetacean Sanctuary and is ideal for snorkeling or diving.
  6. The Cinque Terre is a hiker's paradise, and the Blue Trail is among the most beautiful hiking trails in Italy. Remember that it is always good to check the weather, have good physical condition and appropriate footwear. For more info on the trails, you can use the official App with maps of the Cinque Terre Park.

A section of the Blue Trail through Cinque Terre's olive trees and vineyards, Italy

A part of the magnificent Blue Trail lined with olive trees and vineyards

Useful information about Cinque Terre

The Cinque Terre is divided into 3 municipalities: Vernazza, Monterosso, and Riomaggiore (which includes the villages of Manarola, Vernazza, and Corniglia) and stretch along a 10-kilometer stretch of jagged coastline. 

The first town you will come across on your way from Genoa to La Spezia is Monterosso, the most populous of the Cinque Terre. Following that are Vernazza, Corniglia, Manarola, and Riomaggiore, the easternmost village. You can visit Cinque Terre on a day trip or stay overnight, as there are several accommodation options. 

The largest village, Monterosso, has hotels, apartments, and family rooms. Vernazza is another option, and the majority of the hotels are located in the main square. If you want to stay somewhere quieter and less touristy, we recommend Corniglia, the only town that is not on the sea. Riomaggiore, on the other hand, is ideal for those seeking a more lively nightlife, whereas Manarola is ideal for a romantic getaway for couples.

The supermarkets in Cinque Terre are not well stocked, but you will find everything you need there. We recommend shopping in the larger towns of Levanto and La Spezia if you want to save money and have a wider selection. 

As for health care, the municipalities of Riomaggiore and Monterosso provide medical guards and first aid services to residents and visitors.

Important phone numbers for your stay in Cinque Terre

Here are some useful contacts to keep within reach during your stay in Cinque Terre: 

  • Municipality of Riomaggiore: +390187760211
  • Municipality of Vernazza-Corniglia: +390187821247
  • Municipality of Monterosso: +390187817525
  • Carabinieri (Riomaggiore): +390187920112
  • Carabinieri (Monterosso): +390187817524
  • Carabinieri (Vernazza-Corniglia): +390187920112
  • Medical Service (Riomaggiore): +390187507727
  • Medical Service (Vernazza-Corniglia): +390187/800973
  • White Cross Assistance (Riomaggiore): +390187920777
  • White Cross Assistance (Monterosso): +390187817475
  • Cinque Terre National Park Info Point (Manarola): +390187760511
  • European emergency number: 112

Transportation in Cinque Terre

Once there, you can choose to travel between the Cinque Terre villages by foot, train, boat, or car. 

The Cinque Terre trails are probably the main draw for those who visit these places. There is a dense network of well-marked scenic trails connecting the various villages as well as the interior (as far as Val di Vara). Keep in mind that the sections of the Blue Trail between Monterosso and Vernazza, as well as Vernazza and Corniglia, are toll-free from March to November and can only be accessed by purchasing the Cinque Terre Trekking Card.

You can also take advantage of the ferries that connect the various locations for a breathtaking view from the sea. Driving between the Cinque Terre villages, on the other hand, is a bad idea due to traffic and parking issues. Furthermore, there are no gas stations in the Cinque Terre; the nearest are in La Spezia and Levanto.

The train, which connects all of the villages in a matter of minutes, is the most practical mode of transportation in the Cinque Terre. Trains travel through tunnels carved into the rock, providing truly breathtaking views of the coast. Furthermore, the Cinque Terre Treno MS Card provides unlimited second-class travel and allows you to get off at any station. 

Tip: visit the Cinque Terre National Park webpage to learn more about the Cinque Terre Card.

A regional train running on the Genoa-La Spezia railway line to the Cinque Terre, Italy

A regional train on its way to one of the Cinque Terre villages

Ports in Cinque Terre

Each of the Cinque Terre towns (except Corniglia) has its own small port and unique characteristics.

Vernazza, Monterosso al Mare, Manarola, and Riomaggiore have postcard-worthy ports. Colorful little houses, fishing boats, pleasure craft, restaurants, and small shops contribute to the lively and welcoming atmosphere.

The Cinque Terre ports are not only a stop for local fishermen, but also a tourist attraction. Ferries arrive from nearby towns on the Ligurian Riviera, and a variety of boat excursions depart.

Corniglia, on the other hand, is the only town in the Cinque Terre without a port due to its hillside location. To get to Corniglia, either climb the Lardarina steps (377 steps) or take the shuttle bus from the train station.

Useful info: the port of Monterosso is the only one with wheelchair access.

Cinque Terre ferry: schedules and tickets

During certain months of the year, you can take a ferry to the Cinque Terre from the ports of Levanto, La Spezia, Portovenere, and Lerici.

The ferry company Navigazione Golfo dei Poeti operates daily routes to Monterosso, Vernazza, Manarola, and Riomaggiore from late March to early November. Ferries to the Cinque Terre leave Deiva and Moneglia 3 times a week until September.

You can book a daily, afternoon, or one-way ticket to the Cinque Terre, with the option of boarding and disembarking wherever and whenever you want along the route of Line 02. 

Ferry tickets to the Cinque Terre villages cost from €5 to €39. Prices vary depending on the port of departure and ticket discounts. Keep in mind that children under the age of 6 travel for free.

Cinque Terre tickets are available at the embarkation docks and online. However, keep in mind that ferry rides may be changed or canceled due to inclement weather conditions.

Useful info: the ferry operator Golfo Paradiso organizes day trips from Genoa to the Cinque Terre by boat. The itinerary includes a 3-hour stop in Monterosso and stunning views of all the villages from the sea.

The first evening lights in Manarola, Cinque Terre, Italy

The luminous village of Manarola and its small port at night

Where to book your ferry tickets to Cinque Terre?

At the moment, it is not possible to book tickets to Cinque Terre ports on Ferryhopper, but you can still do so on the ferry operators' website or directly from the ticket offices at the port.

In the meantime, check out our Map of ferries and find out all available ferry connections to Liguria.

Cinque Terre ferry timetable

View the complete ferry schedule from and to Cinque Terre for the upcoming week. Find up-to-date trip information, including departure and arrival dates and times, ferry operators and ticket prices.

Frequent ferry connections

Cinque Terre has direct ferry connections to 10 ports :